Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Take Action for Philadelphia Musem of Art Security Guards Who Deserve Sick Days

Sign our Online Petition Here

PMA, No Sick-Pay? No, Tax Money!

Philadelphian's have expressed their moral values for the way that we expect workers to be treated when City Council passed the Living Wage Ordinance. The Philadelphia Museum of Art (PMA) has taken more than $10 million in tax payer money and many millions more in donated facilities. Despite the museums reliance on the support of Philadelphians, the PMA leaders scoff at the moral values expressed by the Living Wage Ordinance. The PMA is using your tax money to harm workers. This Labor Day, stand up to the PMA with the POWR campaign.

This Labor Day weekend, our supporters will be mobilizing prayer in at least twenty congregations around the city. If you would like to make a prayer requests for these security guards who are fighting to win paid sick-leave at great risk to their jobs, then you can download a packet of information for your pastor at our campaign web-site or join our Cause on


Finally, we are asking supporters to visit the Philadelphia Museum of Art on September 7 and wear a "My Security Guard Deserves Paid Sick Days" sticker into the museum.

" width="2" height="2" alt="" />

After you've seen the collections, stick around for our Blessing of the Hands Ceremony . This event will include live art, poetry, speech, song and prayer and will lift up the spirit of activists and low-waged workers who are fighting to better their lives.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Workers Echo the Call


Workers echoing the call

Forty years ago today, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was shot dead in Memphis, where he was fighting alongside trash collectors who were trying to improve their working conditions, wages and benefits through unionization. All of the trash collectors were black.

Today, similar struggles continue.

It is sad to see a new group of black workers who must fight against the odds to win their rights and a voice on the job.

In Philadelphia in 2008, AlliedBarton, a contract security personnel company and among the largest employers of African American workers in Philadelphia, uses economic tactics to disenfranchise its workers.

Private security has been a booming industry since the attacks of 9/11. Thousands of workers in Philadelphia are private security guards; 97 percent of them are black. AlliedBarton, which has a virtual monopoly in Philadelphia security, is making money while paying an average of $9.80 - not a livable wage.

The Philadelphia Officers and Workers Rising (POWR), a project of the national campaign for workers' rights called Jobs with Justice, seeks to win for the guards in Philadelphia an equitable, livable wage and representation by the Philadelphia Security Officers Union.

POWR's demand is that AlliedBarton voluntarily recognize the union. It is asking the Art Museum, the Kimmel Center and Temple University - all big clients of AlliedBarton - to demand that recognition.

POWR has successfully brought together workers, people of faith and college students and has already won paid sick leave for some security guards and a wage increase for others at the University of Pennsylvania and Temple University. These benefits will equal more than $2 million in wages that will flow right back to the city through commerce and taxes.

POWR's call to action on behalf of the security guards is "It Is More Than Just a Dream," referencing King.

In 1968, King and the trash collectors marched through the streets of Memphis to garner support for their cause. On Sunday, local clergy, security guards and activists will march to make their voices heard, echoing King:

"True compassion is more than flinging a coin to a beggar . . . . It comes to see that an edifice which produces beggars needs restructuring."

If You Go

What: March with Philadelphia Officers and Workers Rising (POWR)

When: 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday

Where: Begin at Arch Street Methodist Church, 55 N. Broad St., and march to the Kimmel Center, 260 S. Broad St.

Information: Fabricio Rodriguez at 215-670-5855 or e-mail fabricio@phillyjwj.org

The Rev. Alan Joplin (alanjoplin@yahoo.com) is an associate pastor at Living Water United Church of Christ on Germantown Avenue.

Monday, August 11, 2008

"Industrial Revolutions" Benefit for Mexican Workers 08/17/08

In solidarity with the independent unionists of SUTEIVP in Potosi
Mexico, Philadelphia Jobs With Justice, Philadelphia Mexican
Solidarity Group, The Defenestrator and Temple Student Labor Action
Project will be hosting a hip hop benefit show "Industrial
Revolutions" on Sunday August 17th at The Rotunda 4012 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA from 5pm-11:30pm.

Date: August 17th
Time: 5 - 10:30pm
Place: Rotunda 4012 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA


Brian Kipruto
Thomas Robinson

Words By:

Band: Taina Asili y su Banda Revelde
My Space: http://www.myspace.com/tainapoet

Spoken Poet:Eric Yates, Philadelphia Student Union
Web: http://www.phillystudentunion.org/

MC: Rugged and Raw, NYC
My Space: http://www.myspace.com/ruggednrawrnr

Spoken Poet: Daniel Jones, Philadelphia Student Union
Web: http://www.phillystudentunion.org/

MC: Tha Truth, Philadelphia
My Space: http://www.myspace.com/thanonconformists

Spoken Poet: Jacob Weinstein, Philly
My Space: http://www.myspace.com/jacobthepoet

MC: Hasan Salaam, NJ
My Space: http://www.myspace.com/hasansalaam

MC: Son of Nun, Baltimore
My Space: http://www.myspace.com/socialistmc

MC: Lee G
My Space: http://www.myspace.com/leeganddelon

Live Graffitti By: Will Kasso
My Space: http://www.myspace.com/sagecollection

Beats and Grooves By:
Dj Aggro, Dj Sweet and DJ SPAM

$10 Sliding Scale

All proceeds will go towards supporting the ongoing struggle for work place democracy of the SUTEIVP (Mexican Glass Workers Union, Potosi, Mexico)

On Saturday May 3rd, a delegation of US labor and community interests
(including me!) were invited to Mexico City (Districto Federal), via
their local Mexican consulates by the office of SRE (Secretary of
Relations Abroad) and the IME (Institute of Mexicans Abroad) to be a
part of a delegation of Latino U.S. Labor representatives, comprised
of labor activists from throughout the US. This was the 55th year the
Mexican government and the IME hosted this conference, and the first
year that U.S. unions, community based labor interest groups, and
worker centers were invited to attend.

U.S. labor represented a wide variety of trades and community groups
including, TIRRC (Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition),
UFCW Local 881 (Chicago IL), Chicago Workers Collaborative, LCLAA
(Chicago Metropolitan Labor Council for the Advancement of Latin
Americans), ILA AFL-CIO (Houston, TX), KIMARI (Kentucky Institute of
Mexican American Relations), SEIU ULTCW6434 (Los Angeles CA), SEIU
Local 721 (Los Angeles CA), AFL-CIO Solidarity Center (Mexico), UFCW
Local 271 (Omaha NE), Jobs With Justice (Portland OR), Glaziers Union
Local 1324 (Saint Paul MN), Teamsters Local 136 (San Diego CA),
AFL-CIO State Building and Construction Trades (San Jose CA),
Carpenters Local 217 (San Jose CA), Carpenters Local 405 (San Jose
CA), Teamsters Local 952 (Santa Ana CA) UBC Local 9144 San Jose CA),
and the Philadelphia chapter of Jobs With Justice.

On the second day of our visit, U.S. labor representatives and
community allies were informed by Country Program Director, AFL-CIO
(Mexico) of several examples of labor/human rights abuses currently
being faced by Mexican independent unionists. That same night, we
attended a separate discussion hosted by LCLAA and the AFL-CIO
Solidarity Center with Mexican workers/independent unionists of
SUTEIVP at the Vidriera Potosi (bottle manufacturing plant workers in
San Luis Potosi, Mexico). We discovered that Grupo Modelo, (producer
of Corona), has launched an all-out assault on the independent union
at its Vidriera Potosí bottle-making plant in San Luis Potosí, Mexico.

Grupo Modelo's, main shareholder is Maria Asunción Aramburuzabala,
who's estimated net worth is $2 billion, according to Forbes, making
her the richest woman in Latin America, and wife of the U.S.
Ambassador in Mexico, Tony O. Garza Jr. Beginning in January 2008, the
company has fired some 300 workers, including the leadership of the
independent union SUTEIVP (Sindicato Unico de Trabajadores de la
Empresa Industria Vidriera del Potosí, S.A. de C.V.), in violation of
the collective bargaining agreement, as well as Mexican and
international law. These layoffs affect over 1,500 women, elderly and
children. The company also gave a pro-employer union, the CROC (
Confederation Revolucionaria de Obreros Campesinos or Revolutionary
Confederation of Workers and Peasants), unfettered access to the
workplace. On May 9, with less than 48 hours' notice to the union, the
Federal Labor Board called an election between the CROC and the
SUTEIVP. While CROC leaders were able to hold captive audience
meetings with workers inside the plant, the fired SUTEIVP workers were
not allowed in, and the plant was surrounded by some 200 heavily armed
federal police.

The independent democratic worker led union became a political problem
for the owners of the beer company, the government of San Luis Potosí,
the Mexican federal government, the leaders of the company run unions,
and the major corporations, because word traveled quickly among Potosí
workers and across the country that this worker led organization had
recently become democratic and independent of the CTM (Confederation
of Mexican Workers). The independent union had also succeeded in
substantially bettering working conditions and raising salaries an
average of 19% in its first year of activity. The SUTEIVP became an
example for many Mexican workers, and because of their successes in
creating a democratic voice for the workers, the bosses of the
corporations, government officials, and leaders of co-opted unions
decided to destroy it.

Philadelphia JwJ supports National Health Care Day of Action!

JwJ Volunteers (Brandon Slattery, Jay Strong, Colleen Hall, Miguel Williams), and JwJ organizers (Eduardo, Fabricio)

Jay Strong and Colleen Hall, JwJ volunteers

Temple SLAP! Quyen Ngyuen, Brandon Slattery..

Eduardo Soriano (JwJ field organizer) and John Braxton (chair of JwJ exec committee)

Jobs with Justice supports Philadelphia City Workers (AFSCME)!

City employees live in every Philadelphia neighborhood. They work in every neighborhood. They serve in every neighborhood. They benefit every neighborhood. Money they earn here, they spend here. Download brochure by clicking on image to read about how our city workers' contract negotiations affects you.

City employees impact nearly every aspect of our lives from providing Birth Certificates to nursing the sick to ensuring clean drinking water to saving homes and saving lives.

Every City worker lives in Philadelphia, pays personal and property taxes in Philadelphia and spends their hard earned wages on Philadelphia housing, goods and services. Their family sustaining jobs and wages help keep property values higher and local businesses stable.

When salaries, health benefits and pensions are cut, less money goes into our local economy, where it is needed to provide jobs for many others.

Significant cutbacks reduce taxes collected to fund our schools and to maintain the city’s infrastructure. Any reduction in tax collection results in an immediate cut in city services.

And, significant cutbacks mean the loss of decent job opportunities in our City for our own kids as they graduate and seek family-sustaining employment of their own. Once the jobs are lost or privatized, they are hard to replace.

What you can do to help protect city services

The Big Business tax decisions made by City Council and the Mayor directly impact the delivery of services in your neighborhood. The loss of tax dollars from big business will require cuts in services in the coming months and years.

Call the Mayor and your Councilperson and tell them to put the needs of Philadelphia’s citizens and workers first -- ahead of WalMart.

Tell him you support full funding of City services and a fair contract for City workers.
Mayor Michael Nutter – 215-686-2181

Call today, before it’s too late!

UAW.. A fair deal NOW!

Philly JwJ went to Atlantic City to support United Auto Workers organizing Casino dealers!

Brandon Slattery (JwJ volunteer) and Eduardo (JwJ field organizer)

Kathy Black (Philadelphia Coalition of Labor Union Women president), and Dorian Lam (JwJ)


Jay Strong (JwJ volunteer)

Philadelphia CLUW and JwJ marches together!

Jobs with Justice Solidarity Dinner May 2008

Our MC of the night - Netrisha D.

Ceclia - P.O.W.R.

Eduardo Soriano Castillo awarding James Robinson a solidarity award

John Dodds (PUP) receiving solidarity award

Dorian Lam awarding Solidarity award to Bishop Dwayne Royster

Fabricio awarding Mr. Patrick Eiding (Philadelphia AFL-CIO) Solidarity award

Bishop Dwayne Royster, Living Water United Church of Christ

Honoring JwJ Executive Committee Members - Diane Mohoney, Ben Sears, John Braxton

Minh, Dorian, Wes Weaver, Liz Young, Matt Ryan, Kevin Paris, Quyen Ngyuen, Brandon Slattery (JwJ SLAP and volunteers!)

Thomas Robinson (chair of P.O.W.R.)

John Braxton (AFT Local 2026) awarding Solidarity Award to John Dodds

Rev Shaunel, Presbytery Philadelphia leading opening prayer

JwJ executive director, Fabricio Rodriguez welcoming guests

Photos by Dave Garrett Sarrafian

Harvey Finkle Photography

UPENN Student Labor Week of Action 2007 - Winning UPENN officers paid sick days!

Rev Bev

Kevin Paris (Temple SLAP), Hayling Price (UPENN SLAP) and Fabricio Rodriguez (JwJ) stand up for security officers!

Eduardo Soriano (JwJ) and community members fight for paid sick days!

Kate Stabler (Temple SLAP)

Todd Wolfson (MMP, Philly IMC)

Rev Jay Broadnax

Sept 5th March for paid sick days for Temple security officers 2007!

Art Hochner (Temple TAUP) in solidarity with Temple workers

Temple University students and Temple workers unite!